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Author Topic: Back to Baryta  (Read 12695 times)

Jane

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Back to Baryta
« on: April 27, 2016, 04:34:02 pm »

Some time ago I ran an informal and very limited comparison of prints on reflective papers I happened to have on hand, the Harman by Hahnemuhle Gloss Baryta, the Epson Exhibition Fiber and the Ilford Gold Fibre Silk ( all using ImagePrint profiles, which I trust to do well by the papers. ). The Ilford does work very nicely with some black and white images but overall, the Harman came out on top and I've put up with the outrageous curling problems as packaged by Hahnemuhle ever since for the sake of the Harman's superior tonal reproduction ( have to say that there was some improvement on the curling front with the last box I bought ). I recently ( and hopefully ) bought some letter-size Canson Baryta Photographique. It arrived nice and flat in the box, but unfortunately also, to my eye, rendered tones rather flatly. I judge it much inferior to the Harmon, where you get the tonal range on the paper where you put it on the screen.

I do intend to try the new Epson Legacy papers, both the reflective and the matte. I think someone compared the Legacy baryta to the Canson. Has anyone had experience with that paper as well as H by H Gloss Baryta?

And switching to matte papers, my favorite has been the Epson UltraSmooth Fine Art ( as against some of the Hahmemuhle fine art papers ), but I will also try the new Legacy matte papers. I realize that much of this is old hat at this forum, but I hope not stale.  Suggestions and opinions would be welcome.
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Mark D Segal

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2016, 05:41:06 pm »

Some time ago I ran an informal and very limited comparison of prints on reflective papers I happened to have on hand, the Harman by Hahnemuhle Gloss Baryta, the Epson Exhibition Fiber and the Ilford Gold Fibre Silk ( all using ImagePrint profiles, which I trust to do well by the papers. ). The Ilford does work very nicely with some black and white images but overall, the Harman came out on top and I've put up with the outrageous curling problems as packaged by Hahnemuhle ever since for the sake of the Harman's superior tonal reproduction ( have to say that there was some improvement on the curling front with the last box I bought ). I recently ( and hopefully ) bought some letter-size Canson Baryta Photographique. It arrived nice and flat in the box, but unfortunately also, to my eye, rendered tones rather flatly. I judge it much inferior to the Harmon, where you get the tonal range on the paper where you put it on the screen.

I do intend to try the new Epson Legacy papers, both the reflective and the matte. I think someone compared the Legacy baryta to the Canson. Has anyone had experience with that paper as well as H by H Gloss Baryta?

And switching to matte papers, my favorite has been the Epson UltraSmooth Fine Art ( as against some of the Hahmemuhle fine art papers ), but I will also try the new Legacy matte papers. I realize that much of this is old hat at this forum, but I hope not stale.  Suggestions and opinions would be welcome.

None of this makes any sense whatsoever to another reader without a thorough explanation of your testing and printing methodologies and equipment used, kind of test images and display thereof unless standard well-known printet test targets. Reading some paper reviews on this website or other serious ones elsewhere may help you along.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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elliot_n

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2016, 07:27:13 pm »

None of this makes any sense whatsoever to another reader without a thorough explanation of your testing and printing methodologies and equipment used, kind of test images and display thereof unless standard well-known printet test targets. Reading some paper reviews on this website or other serious ones elsewhere may help you along.

Jane’s post made sense to me.

I share her opinion that the Harman paper has the best image quality of the baryta papers - it’s sharp, it’s smooth, and the ink seems to really sink into the surface. However the curling issue (sheets curl up, rolls curl down) is a major drawback (head strikes, print handling etc).

The Canson Baryta lies much flatter - but I prefer looking at images printed on the Harman.

Canson Platine is worth a look.
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Mark D Segal

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2016, 08:19:37 pm »

OK, I suppose if you are just trading personal opinions about papers it's fine as far as it goes, which to my mind is not very, but each to his/her own. I'd be the last one to discourage simply trading undocumented opinions if that is the intent.

Discussions and even formal reviews of papers are admittedly difficult because given what it is, the most effective way to appreciate paper is from directly using it and handling it oneself. But one can't do that with thousands of readers over the internet. That is why a lot of well-structured surrounding information about comparison approach, materials, etc. should help to enhance readers' appreciation of what the writer experiences and is trying to convey.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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Jane

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #4 on: April 28, 2016, 06:42:59 am »

Thank you Elliot, and you, too, Mark, for your responses. I appreciate the value of technical testing, some reported here for different characteristics, and of course the permanency testing by the Wilhelm Institute, but I'm speaking of the artistic impression and tonal fidelity achieved by the paper ( given the certain printer, inkset, profiles, etc. ). I specified an informal and limited comparison, not a 'test'. It's the eye that judges the overall impact of an image and I was putting forward my eye's view. I was wondering what opinions other had about the Harman what they thought of the new Epson Legacy papers in comparison.

PS: will try the Canson Platine.
« Last Edit: April 28, 2016, 06:50:45 am by Jane »
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Mark D Segal

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2016, 08:48:00 am »

Jane, I appreciate reporting on the artistic impressions - it's fine, but that is of course heavily influenced by what we see and how we see it. If you put yourself in your readers' shoes for a moment, I think you would understand that it's more effective to make these statements about artistic impression if you presented some material on the kind of images you are looking at, how they were printed (printer used, profiles, editing, the illumination conditions in which you are viewing them, perhaps some scans of portions of the prints that show the differences you are alluding to etc. It is possible in the Forum to mention and provide some contextual add-ons that give more "meat and meaning" to your message. I'm not talking here about research involving scientific measurements because it requires instruments and techniques that most people who want to discuss print quality don't have and for the most part don't need, especially for a discussion about impressions alone; so I'm just suggesting to improve the story with more context and background that gives readers a handle on evaluating your message.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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Jane

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2016, 10:09:15 am »

Mark, I had thought I mentioned the printer, the P800, with the Epson proprietary inkset, but see that I didn't, an oversight. I did say that I used ImagePrint profiles - on the same edited ( slight curve adjustment and sharpening in Photoshop CC ) image. The paper profile could have made a difference, but experience with ImagePrint gives me confidence about getting a reliable result for a given paper. I do thank you for your enumeration of factors to consider in comparing prints. However, the factor in this modest case is my eye, and its judgment is that the image looks a heck of lot better - that is, it's translated more faithfully from screen to paper better - and with a look of more depth, on the Harman than the Canson. I'm interested in other papers that are well thought of.
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Mark D Segal

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #7 on: April 28, 2016, 10:29:43 am »

Hi again Jane,

Fair enough. I'm wondering whether the Harman Gloss you are working with is the same as that reviewed in these three articles on this website, quite some years back now.

Baryta papers summer 2008

Battle of Barytas

Surface of things
« Last Edit: April 30, 2016, 10:33:27 am by Mark D Segal »
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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pearlstreet

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2016, 12:43:29 pm »

Jane, I love the Harman by Hahnemuhle Fibre Gloss Baryta. It has a depth to it that reminds me of C prints. I have any prints done with it dry-mounted. It does buckle pretty easily. But I'm having everything on gloss paper mounted now.

Mark, I think personal opinion is fine. I realize it's all subjective, but it helps to hear from "regular" users as well as testers.

Harman is one of my favorite papers.
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Mark D Segal

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2016, 01:35:55 pm »

.............

Mark, I think personal opinion is fine. I realize it's all subjective, but it helps to hear from "regular" users as well as testers.


Yes, I think it is too - don't get me wrong; all I'm trying to convey is that opinions carry more meaning and conviction when they are accompanied by more context.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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pluton

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #10 on: April 29, 2016, 03:27:52 am »


I share her opinion that the Harman paper has the best image quality of the baryta papers - it’s sharp, it’s smooth, and the ink seems to really sink into the surface. However the curling issue (sheets curl up, rolls curl down) is a major drawback (head strikes, print handling etc).

The Canson Baryta lies much flatter - but I prefer looking at images printed on the Harman.



This is my experience as well.  The Canson(and the apparent Freestyle rebadge of it) has a yellowish color that the HbyH doesn't.
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Miles

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #11 on: April 29, 2016, 09:25:50 am »

Thanks for sharing your impressions, Jane. 
Miles
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Jane

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #12 on: April 29, 2016, 06:00:58 pm »

Thanks for comments and paper suggestions to Miles, Pluton ( love that moniker! ), Sharon, and, of course, Mark again. I read Michael Reichmann's original article, 'Battle of the Barytas', back in '09 and was turned on to the Harman at that time. I did a print comparison of the same 3 or 4 papers, and I may be badly mis-remembering, but aside from supplying info about the chemical makeup of the papers, I think the bases for Michael's opinions included the venerable methodology of eyeballing.

Mark, I think the Battle of the Narytas took place on Mars and involved John Carter.
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Mark D Segal

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #13 on: April 29, 2016, 06:31:55 pm »

Thanks for comments and paper suggestions to Miles, Pluton ( love that moniker! ), Sharon, and, of course, Mark again. I read Michael Reichmann's original article, 'Battle of the Barytas', back in '09 and was turned on to the Harman at that time. I did a print comparison of the same 3 or 4 papers, and I may be badly mis-remembering, but aside from supplying info about the chemical makeup of the papers, I think the bases for Michael's opinions included the venerable methodology of eyeballing.

Mark, I think the Battle of the Narytas took place on Mars and involved John Carter.

Ya, I guess there is an element of sci-fi in all this after all! :-). I worked with Michael on the "Battle" article and yes, there was a combination of measurements and careful visual comparison under controlled conditions using known printer test images. So it was a bit more than "eyeballing". No doubt examining prints is fundamental to this work, which we do in two ways: (i) blind tasting and (ii) also knowing a fair bit about what we are examining.

Anyhow, this thread and your views re-tweaked my curiosity so I chatted with the appropriate source and learned that the Harman paper under discussion here is a revamped version of the one we reviewed back in '09, so I shall be having a second look at it. Stay tuned.

Cheers.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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elliot_n

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #14 on: April 29, 2016, 06:40:12 pm »

I've been using it continuously since 2009 and haven't noticed any changes (apart from it now being called Harman by Hahnemuhle, which I don't really understand). It still smells like a B&W silver gelatin paper. I thought it was made in Ilford's factory in Cheshire, but I guess it's only coated there, and the paper itself comes from somewhere else. I'm interested to find out more.
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Jane

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #15 on: April 29, 2016, 07:20:30 pm »

Elliott,  I thought it was interesting that Harman called the original paper 'Gloss FB AL' - 'Real Photo Baryta with Alumina for Air Dried Gloss Prints', whereas Hahemuhle distributes the paper merely as 'Gloss Baryta', no mention of the alumina component. The paper is the same weight, seems to produce more or less the same quality of print but I couldn't try to interchange profiles because I changed my printers/inkset about the same time that Hahnemuhle took over distribution. The Hahnemuhle representative I corresponded with claimed there was no change whatsoever in the paper, but where, I ask you, is the 'Alumina'?
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Mark D Segal

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #16 on: April 29, 2016, 07:56:23 pm »

I've been using it continuously since 2009 and haven't noticed any changes (apart from it now being called Harman by Hahnemuhle, which I don't really understand). It still smells like a B&W silver gelatin paper. I thought it was made in Ilford's factory in Cheshire, but I guess it's only coated there, and the paper itself comes from somewhere else. I'm interested to find out more.

The paper industry is pretty secretive about sourcing so you will likely not find out much about where and how it is made (which has more complex elements than sniffing it can inform  about); but in any event the important thing is the end-result. It was reformulated at some point, as stated on the back of the box: ".....Harman Technology took over the black and white photo manufacturing element of Ilford in 2005. Since then (ed. they don't say exactly when) new inkjet coatings were developed......" IF the reformulation took place BEFORE we wrote the review back in '09, what we used then and what we have now is the same thing; otherwise not. Anyhow. I'll be having a second look at it with fresh stock.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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donbga

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #17 on: April 29, 2016, 10:12:33 pm »

None of this makes any sense whatsoever to another reader without a thorough explanation of your testing and printing methodologies and equipment used, kind of test images and display thereof unless standard well-known printet test targets. Reading some paper reviews on this website or other serious ones elsewhere may help you along.

Jane,

I think sharing and reporting your impressions about materials is just fine without the long winded technical discussions some members relish.

I also loved the Harman FB AL and was quite depressed when it was discontinued. Back in the day when we worked in the traditional darkroom it was always disappointing to find out ones favorite paper had been dropped. I had Ilford Multigrade III dialed in perfectly and then paper manufacturers were forced to removed certain heavy metals from their emulsions like cadmium and BAM we were left high and dry with new emulsions to print on. I rue the day that Kodak quit making Elite and several other papers of the day.

Needless to say we have to move on and it's always rewarding to me to hear about aesthetic responds to new and old inkjet paper configurations. You have to remember much of the population of this forum is comprised of old figs that love to fiddle with MFT & H&D curves and so forth so your post is refreshing to me at least.

Regards,

Don Bryant
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elliot_n

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #18 on: April 30, 2016, 07:05:39 am »

But Harman FB AL was never discontinued. It was just rebadged as Harman by Hahnemuhle Gloss Baryta. At least that's how I understand it. It seems like the same paper to me. Beautiful image quality, but with a serious curl problem.
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Jane

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Re: Back to Baryta
« Reply #19 on: April 30, 2016, 08:20:38 am »

Thank you, donbga, for the encouraging words. However, I am not inhibited from expressing my opinions and I do actually value the technical stuff, do value detail, and really do appreciate the expertise of those who do the work of analyzing the material substance of the media - after all, we want our images preserved for all time with colors and tones intact  ;-)  -  but once the physical matters are sorted it does comes down to aesthetics and how faithfully our vision on the screen is translated to the entirely different medium of paper. I tried the Canson Baryta because of glowing reports but was disappointed. I couldn't see why anyone would use it in preference to the Harman and was interested in finding out if others shared my opinion. We are a chatty species.

Elliot, I understood the same - just a rebadging, but I am looking forward to Mark's re-anaysis of the paper when he gets the time - I am curious about the alumina - where has it gone? Is it gone?

Re: the curling, I had some boxes that were truly almost unusable for the curling, the newer boxes seem better, though there is still some curl. The P800 seems to deal better with hinky paper than the R3000. I am really rather flabbergasted that a reputable company like Hahnemuhle, so long a leader in the industry, would send a product in such poor condition to its customers.
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